Board & Staff

Board of Directors

Eric Aucilino

Eric Aulicino

Eric is the owner of EBITDA Intl. Business Consultancy and is a 30+ year global M&A and business integration professional, specializing in process optimization and international expansion. He received a B.A. from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock; a Russian Linguist Certification from the Defense Language Institute/Presidio of Monterey, CA; and a certificate in Russian studies from Middlebury and Harvard.

Eric is an Army 10th SFG(A) Honorably Discharged veteran. After living overseas for nearly 30 years, Eric relocated from Europe to North Egremont in 2020 and, with his partner and her children, has a small farm with rescue animals (horses, goats, dogs, cats, rabbits, and chickens). He is passionate about community and economic development and strongly believes that leveraging his diverse international experience and business skillset can positively support the efforts of the CDCSB.

He is committed to working with stakeholders in the area to optimize available resources, advocate for an improved quality of life for all, and support affordable housing and enhanced economic and employment opportunities.

Cara Becker, Treasurer

Cara graduated from Adelphi University with a degree in Business Administration. Before moving to the Berkshires, she worked as a Manager of Executive Training and Development for Lord & Taylor stores where she created and implemented Executive training programs for the company nationwide. Cara moved with her family to the Berkshires from Long Island and has since taken roles as Community Liaison for the town of Great Barrington and Executive Administrative Assistant to the Chief of Police. Cara has also participated in many task forces that focus on the betterment of the community she loves.

Erik Bruun

Erik is the President of SoCo Creamery. He has also led an investment company specializing in emerging markets and has been a reporter, editor and writer, publishing several books, including Our Nation’s Archive. He was the founding president of the Railroad Street Youth Project for ten years and has taken leadership roles in several community organizations.

Spring Burke

Spring Burke

Spring works as a Vice President, Mortgage Advisor for Pittsfield Cooperative Bank and has worked in the banking industry for over half of her life in different roles. It is very fulfilling to help her customers and potential customers. She has sat on the Board of the Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce with the role of Treasurer for several years. She lives in Norfolk, CT, which is her hometown.

Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, vacationing, hiking, and golfing.

Eugene Carr headshot

Eugene Carr

Eugene is a serial entrepreneur who has been a visionary in building Internet-based technology solutions at the intersection of arts and technology. His first company was the national arts listing site CultureFinder.com, funded by AOL Ventures and Comcast. He then co-founded and was the CEO of Patron Technology, which developed PatronManager.com, a CRM/ticketing/marketing/fundraising platform. He coauthored Breaking the Fifth Wall: Rethinking Arts Marketing for the 21st Century, which describes how CRM is changing the way arts organizations build relationships with their ticket buyers and donors. Gene is founder of Stage and Screen Careers, which trains artists and musicians to get jobs in the tech industry. In addition, he is a mentor and coach to several start-ups, serves on the board of three companies, and is an active angel investor. Gene was the co-founder and co-chair of LaunchU, an alumni-led program for entrepreneurship at Oberlin College and is the festival director for the summer street arts and music festival Berkshire Busk! in Great Barrington.

McCaela Donovan headshot.

McCaela Donovan

McCaela is owner and principal consultant at theloftBRK, a Creative Consultancy with a Holistic Approach to help Small Businesses, NonProfits and Arts Organizations thrive. Throughout her career McCaela has served in multiple leadership roles, most recently as the Managing Director of White Heron Theatre Company on Nantucket. McCaela spent eight years as the Assistant Director of the Boston University School of Theatre, heading Admissions and Recruitment for undergraduate and graduate performance programs and as a college consultant for Artsbridge LLC. She has taught and worked with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, Boston Conservatory, Emerson College, Walnut Hill School for the Arts, Framingham State University, and other esteemed institutions. Alongside academic work, McCaela is an Eliot Norton and IRNE award-winning actress, having worked in theatre, film, and television for over 25 years in both NYC and Boston.

Her most important and fulfilling job is mom to two boys. McCaela serves on the Affordable Housing Trust in Stockbridge and is thrilled to join the CDCSB’s excellent team in its incredibly important mission.

Thomas Doyle

Tom is a Broker Associate with Dunes Real Estate and Bishop West Real Estate, as well as the Managing Director of TOPA Enterprises, LLC, a real estate investment and development company. Tom joined the CDCSB Board in 2017.

Jim Harwood, President

Jim has practiced architecture for more than 20 years and is a graduate of Cornell University. In 2007. Jim moved from New York City to Lenox, Massachusetts where his office for J. Harwood Architect is now based. Jim has a history of designing responsible, energy efficient buildings in the challenging northeastern climate. He is a LEED accredited professional. Jim joined the board at CDCSB in 2010 because of his commitment to the creation of living wage jobs and affordable housing.

Robin Helfand

Robin is the Owner and “Sweet Chief” of her eponymous sweet shop, Robin’s Candy, in Great Barrington. Before opening her business in 2004, Robin and her three children lived in Germany and Australia. Robin holds a BA/BS from Tufts and an MBA from Cornell. When not reacquainting customers with the joys of pixie stix and nik’l’nips, Robin is dedicated to building our community. She is a member of the Chamber of Commerce, the MA Retailers Association and the Specialty Food Association.

Brian Horan

Brian Horan

Brian is a respected litigator and counselor. His experience spans areas including real estate, health care, telecommunications, construction, finance, insurance, and intellectual property. Before moving to the Berkshires, Brian spent more than a decade advising New York City agencies and litigating on critical issues including expanding affordable housing and economic opportunity. Brian received his B.A. from Columbia University and his J.D. from NYU School of Law. He and his family relocated to Great Barrington in 2020.

Dennis Iodice headshot.

Dennis Iodice

Dennis is a dedicated advocate for food access and housing insecurity. He and his family relocated to the Berkshires from Oakland, CA six years ago. Since settling in Great Barrington, Dennis has been deeply involved with food initiatives. He serves as the business manager at Berkshire Mountain Bakery, Director of Operations at The People’s Pantry, and manages the Great Barrington Farmers’ Market. In these roles, he focuses on ensuring that everyone in the community has access to nutritious food and works to strengthen the local food system. His work goes beyond mere provision, emphasizing the importance of local currency and fostering a strong sense of community. Through his efforts, Dennis is committed to creating a resilient and self-sufficient local economy while addressing food and housing insecurities in the Berkshires.

Mike Igoe

Mike grew up in Great Barrington and watched the town evolve from a relatively quiet, undiscovered country enclave to a place that has grown by leaps and bounds. Mike graduated from Westfield State with a B.S. in political science, having enjoyed an exciting career as a college baseball player. He has spent the last three decades working in construction as a mason, including running his own masonry business. While he enjoys the beautiful Berkshire landscape, he especially likes living in Great Barrington. Mike thinks that the open-mindedness of the people in the area make it special because “everyone has the chance to thrive.” He sees his work on the CDCSB board as an opportunity to help others thrive.

Janis Martinson headshot.

Janis Martinson

Janis Martinson is Executive Director of the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center. Before joining the Mahaiwe in 2017, she led fundraising teams for schools, higher education, and the performing arts, raising more than $100 million during those years. Her career path includes early years teaching English and Drama in public schools. She has a BA in English (Certificate in Theater and Dance) from Princeton University and an MBA (Honors) from the Isenberg School of Management at UMass-Amherst. Past board service includes National Coalition of Girls Schools and Berkshire South Regional Community Center. She currently serves on the board of the Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce.

Donna Norman

Donna is the Founder + CEO of Calyx Berkshire Dispensary located in downtown Great Barrington. She has had a diverse career as a businesswoman in several fast moving industries — publishing, video game development, and investment banking. Donna is a testament to tenacity, vision, and compassion. Hers is the only 100% women-owned dispensary in Berkshire County and one of only 4 in the state. Donna has lived in the Berkshires for over 20 years and is passionate about our local community. She sits on the board of the Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce. Donna purchased her iconic building last year and has already changed the face of downtown by bringing art, music, and cannabis to town.

Richard Stanley, Vice President

Richard has been involved in town projects and affordable housing projects, including the development of several condominium projects in Great Barrington with affordable home ownership. Taconic Parking lot was funded through a grant written by Richard and he helped found the CDCSB in the early 1990s, serving on the board at that time. We are pleased to have Richard back on the CDCSB board once again.

David Thorne, Clerk

David is the former owner of the Thornewood Inn in Great Barrington for more than three decades. With his wife, Terry, they transformed a neglected  Dutch Colonial home on the outskirts of Great Barrington into a successful Bed & Breakfast and restaurant. A talented musician, David could often be found performing at the Inn for visitors and guests.

Cameron Volastro

Cameron is a Creative Real Estate Marketer and Sales Associate with Stone House Properties, and Co-Founder of the digital marketing agency 413Buzz. Cameron draws on his experience as a Berkshire native to educate others in his Living in the Berkshires YouTube channel. His understanding of the area’s multifamily properties and first-time home buyers has given him a unique understanding of the relationship between tourism and the need for affordable year-round housing. His perspective as a budding entrepreneur sparked a passion for helping other small business owners overcome challenges when taking the first steps to pursue their dreams. 

Staff

Philip Orenstein headshot

Philip Orenstein, Interim Executive Director

Philip is a finance professional with over 35 years of experience in banking, capital markets, and investment fund management.  He received a B.A. in Economics from The George Washington University and an M.B.A. in Finance from New York University. After purchasing a home in Great Barrington in 1998, Philip and his wife, Nancy, raised their two children in the Berkshires. He and his family actively participate in a broad array of cultural and outdoor activities. Philip is the Chair of the Great Barrington Finance Committee and a member of the Board of the Great Barrington Housing Authority. In his free time Philip enjoys biking, golf, and developing his pizza-making skills.

Emmalyn Gaertner, Manager of Finance and Operations 

Emmalyn joined CDCSB full-time in 2017. Emmalyn is a Berkshire native from Becket, MA. After graduating from high school she spent the next ten years living and studying in Washington, DC, New Mexico, Texas, and Spain. She studied Sociology and Spanish at American University in Washington, DC, worked in the education department at the National Museum of Nuclear Science and History in Albuquerque, and taught yoga. She lives in Great Barrington with her husband and children.

Photo credit: Sam Backhaus

Giuli Laveto-Emery
Giulia Laveto-Emery, Business Program and Operations Coordinator

Giulia joined CDCSB in early 2022. Giulia is originally from Italy and moved to the U.S. in 2013. She graduated with a degree in Early Childhood Education at the University of Verona and, since relocating to the Berkshires in 2015, has worked in the nonprofit sector. Giulia is passionate about food and cooking, and loves to support our excellent local restaurants. She lives in Great Barrington with her husband, two young children, and dog.

Erin Murphy headshot.

Erin Murphy, Communications & Marketing Coordinator

Erin is a graphic designer with nearly 20 years of experience working within agencies, publishing companies, and in-house marketing departments. She has also worked as a contractor for a wide variety of organizations in the Berkshires and beyond. She holds a BFA in Communication Design from the Massachusetts College of Art & Design, a professional certificate in Accessibility Core Competencies, and is an Adobe Certified Expert in InDesign.

Erin is a Berkshire County native and lives in Pittsfield with her family. She serves on the Board of the South Community Food Pantry in Pittsfield and is on the Thanksgiving Angels steering committee.